KNOW YOUR ENEMY: MEDITATION ON THE FOURTH POLITICAL REALITY
KNOW YOUR ENEMY: MEDITATION ON THE FOURTH POLITICAL REALITY
According to Professor Dugin, there have been three distinct ideologies since the dawn of the modern age – Liberalism, Marxism, and Fascism – and we are now moving into the era of the Fourth Ideology. Dugin clearly hopes that he can influence how this turns out, but this is a paradoxical belief because underlying Dugin’s ideas is the notion of a kind of natural progression of ideologies.
This deterministic pattern is apparent if we consider the subjects of the three ideologies, which are, in ascending order, the individual, the class, and the nation. Dugin’s hope is that the subject of the Fourth Ideology will be Heidegger’s concept of Dasein, which, in its essence, is almost a kind of animism in that it is a rejection of the hyper-connectivity and hyper-standardization of modernity.
This ideological subject represents a break with the sequence of the three earlier ideologies. Another important difference is that, while the preceding ideologies were each expressions of modernity, his Fourth Ideology is anti- or a-modernist at a time when humanity en masse is giving in to the various temptations of modernity.
But the ideological space that Dugin is mapping out with his Fourth Ideology is not uncontested. In some respects Dugin can even be viewed as something of a "claim jumper" in that the ideological territory in question may even have other occupants or invisible owners. Even before Dugin came along it was clear that we had been moving well beyond the ideological space described by any of the earlier political theories. The world we now occupy is neither Fascist, Marxist, or Liberal, although, as with examining a pool of vomit, we can clearly discern various chunks of each of these.
Independent of Dugin’s attempt, based as it is on the work of Benoist, to define the Fourth PoliticalTheory, a Fourth Political Reality has clearly been coming into being for a long time. Also, Dugin’s theory, such as it is – he acknowledges that it is a work in progress – is prescriptive rather than descriptive, along the lines of “wouldn’t it be nice?”
Yes, compared to what is in effect taking place, it definitely would be nice. So what exactly is taking place? We can get a clear insight into this if we assume there is some overarching symmetry and pattern in the established progression of the three earlier ideologies, and from this we can infer the ideological character of what we are now undergoing and attempt to match it up with the empirical evidence that is readily available.
In the progression individual–class–nation, ask yourself what naturally comes next. The best fit would be world, from this we can infer that the Fourth Ideology must, by this law, be globalist, universalist and have a pan-humanistic focus.
Now, consider the basic functions that each ideology performs. These are to create unity and define competition. Liberalism creates the unity of the individual, or, to use inverse definition, it destroys the preceding unities of traditional society that interfere with the creation of the autonomous individual. Liberalism also defines competition as a struggle between individuals and this is the essence of its progressive nature.
Marxism creates unity within a specific socioeconomic class and defines competition as that between different socioeconomic classes.
Fascism creates unity between different socioeconomic classes and defines competition as between states and/or races, either similarly united or not.
If we stick with the idea that the Fourth Political Ideology is in fact globalist, then we can see that it tends towards some kind of all-inclusive global unity, but that by doing so it has nothing to define competition against, as there cannot be two humanities. Every ideology of course has internal enemies, those in its chosen subject group that lag behind or cling to reality more than to ideology; and every ideology has ways of dealing with them. But having confused and isolated recalcitrants is very different from having opposing entities.
Progress, in the sense of moving from lower to higher and more transcendent forms of life and organization, needs to be driven by competition. When this is gone, the wheels have effectively come off.
Viewed from a world historical perspective, all ideologies have been attempts to create increasingly potent and powerful entities, and the various ideologies have all played a role by parasiting on earlier systems and creating the conditions of their future eclipse. We can see this by briefly reviewing the history of the various ideological subjects:
- The Liberal individual, still in league with the old aristocracy of the earlier era, powered the rise of the mercantile states of the 17th and 18th centuries.
- The Marxist proletariat, directed by the capitalist class created by the previous system, was the foundation of the great industrial economies of the 19th century.
- The Fascist State, driven by the pressures of the industrial masses, created the war states of the 20th century.
- The “Total Wars” of the 20th century created the conditions for the globalized, hyper-connected, anti-nationalist world we are now living in.
Viewed in this way, and allowing for the “bumps" and "twists" of actual history, the idea that a real Fourth Political Reality/ Ideology, quite distinct from the one posited by Dugin, has already come into being seems to have some substance in the available empirical evidence.
Monopolizing the Ideological Subject
The essence of the Fourth Political Reality is the removal of competitiveness. While individuals, classes, and nations can all compete, universal humanitarianism has nothing to compete with except the stars. With no real competition to motivate it in the building of space rockets, it is unlikely to even find a focus there. All it seeks is ever greater and less judgmental interaction between all the blobs on planet earth. It is the triumph of “horizontalism” over “verticalism,” when it’s always been clear that for mankind to have any meaning it needs both.
Dugin’s invocation of Dasein in his Fourth Political Theory, as well as the "We just want to be left alone" ethos that permeates much of the right is almost a ghost image of this anti-competitive essence of the actual Fourth Political Reality.
From a world historical perspective, all earlier ideologies were designed, in league with the technological breakthroughs of the day, to create ever more powerful and potent entities, but the strength of the Fourth Political Reality is that it posits a total monopoly of the ideological subject, i.e. humanity itself, and allows no alternatives or out groups. Those that seek to remain outside are accordingly decried as “ists” – prefixed by any defining characteristic that they use to stand above or even aside from the undifferentiated mass.
This too seems to have some substance in the empirical evidence available.
Once this incipient Fourth Political Reality/ Ideology has achieved its purpose, through materialism, economic globalization, democratization, and social atomization then the way is clear for an infinite decline aided by technology and insincere elites.